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Health ministry chokes on sh38b debt

By Moses Mulondo

Added 2nd April 2018 03:35 PM

The state minister for health, Sarah Opendi, said most of the debts have to do with the various construction projects the ministry has been undertaking.

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The state minister for health, Sarah Opendi, said most of the debts have to do with the various construction projects the ministry has been undertaking.

HEALTH

KAMAPALA - The ministry of health is choking on a debt of sh38b it owes to various suppliers, according to the ministry’s budget ministerial policy statement New Vision has seen.

In the report submitted to Parliament, the ministry indicates that some of the suppliers have taken it to courts of law.

The state minister for health, Sarah Opendi, said most of the debts have to do with the various construction projects the ministry has been undertaking.

According to the 2018/2019 budget framework paper, the budget for the health sector has been reduced from sh1.8 trillion allocated in current 2017/18 financial year to sh1.6 trillon for the next budget.

The reduction will cause the percentage allocation of the health sector budget to fall from 8.3% to 7.4% of the national budget.

Commenting on the budget for the sector, the shadow minister for health, Julius Ochen, said what the Government gives to health centre IVs is a mockery to the lives of Ugandans.

“Even an increase from sh500,000 to sh1.5m for each health centre is nothing. That money cannot sustain a healthy facility for even two weeks. The number of Ugandans who give to health centre IVs is more than those who go to the big hospitals,” he argued.

 The shadow minister faulted the Government for keeping the budget for the sector at 7.4%, way below the 15% which was recommended in the 2001 Abuja protocol.

“Any government that values its citizens seriously invests in the health sector. The meagre budget for our health sector is a clear manifestation that we have a government that attaches no value to the lives of Ugandans. They are more preoccupied with entrenching themselves in power against all odds,” Ochen argued.


 

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